Stephanie Joyce, APRN Contributor


Shell Oil wrapped up its exploratory drilling season in the Arctic today. As promised, not a drop of oil was spilled in the process – but not a drop was drilled either.

It’s official: “No more flights of the Goose. The Goose is done.” That's the word from PenAir president Danny Seybert. As the Dutch Harbor Fisherman first reported, Goose service to Akutan ended over the weekend.

A recent episode of the Discovery Channel series Deadliest Catch could be used as evidence in a criminal case. The crew of the F/V Northwestern is under investigation by the state and they may have unintentionally ratted themselves out on camera.

King Cove and Cold Bay are the latest communities to be certified as ‘Tsunami Ready’ by the National Weather Service. The program recognizes cities that have planned extensively for tsunamis.

It will be at least another month before Akutan’s new airport gets scheduled service and probably longer. The latest round of bids on the federally-subsidized flight route turned up one proposal, but it’s unlikely that the government will accept it.

During World War II, the Japanese occupied the Aleutian island of Attu, and shipped its residents off to prisoner of war camps. The village was never resettled and for decades, it was all but forgotten. This week, the surviving Attuans and those descended from the village gathered in Anchorage.

Akutan’s new, $77 million runway has been open for a month, but residents and their mail are still making the trip to town on PenAir’s World War II-era Grumman Goose seaplane. A dispute over transporting the mail is holding up the process of bringing scheduled service to the new airport.

To some, the term ‘living building’ may mean architecture for urban people with the bank accounts to afford it. In the Aleutian Islands, the regional housing authority is trying to bring living buildings to a population that is not that, but that’s easier said than done.

A magnitude 6.9 earthquake struck near Adak on Wednesday afternoon. The quake was centered about 70 miles southwest of town and City manager Layton Lockett says it felt like the earth was moving in circles underneath him.

Two hikers who went missing on Akutan Island have made it back to town. The Oregon natives set off for Akutan’s volcano Tuesday morning, equipped only for a day hike. When they didn’t report for work at Trident Seafoods on Wednesday, the company sent out ground search parties and contracted with PenAir to do flyovers. The State Troopers and Coast Guard joined the search later in the day.

Adak will keep its jet service for another year. The federal Department of Transportation awarded Alaska Airlines a $1.6 million contract on Tuesday to continue flying to the community as part of the Essential Air Service program.

After months of delays and mishaps, Shell Oil began drilling in the Arctic Sunday, but the operation isn’t off to a smooth start.

After months of delays and mishaps, Shell could start drilling in the Arctic over the weekend. The company had hoped to begin earlier this week, but stormy weather in the Chukchi Sea has delayed preparations.

An independent panel tasked with evaluating the scientific merits of a federal assessment of the endangered Western population of Steller sea lion has released its finding. The general consensus: the government’s science doesn’t pass muster.

Grant Aviation’s new flight service to Atka and Nikolski got off to a smooth start on Monday. The airline is taking over the routes from PenAir, which served the communities for more than a decade.

The hovercraft that will link the village of Akutan with its new airport made the trip down from Cold Bay last week. The hovercraft has a long and storied history operating in the Aleutians, but it’s the only connection between the new runway and the community of 1,000 people.

The first comprehensive survey of the Chukchi Sea ecosystem got underway last week. Scientists will spend the next month collecting samples and cataloguing life in the northern waters.

The state has signed off on a proposal from the City of Akutan to annex nearby lands. The new city boundaries encompass an additional 130 square miles, including the new airport on Akun Island and the city’s geothermal project. In a press release, the Department of Commerce noted that the annexation gives the city greater authority over administration of those projects.

A large earthquake hit near Nikolski around 10:30 Friday morning. “Nikolski is located about 75 miles from the epicenter and I would expect that at this distance a 6.2 would be felt by most people," says Alaska Earthquake Information Center seismologist Natasha Ruppert. "But when we called and asked people, nobody actually felt it.”

A group of scientists aboard the Coast Guard icebreaker Healy are heading to the Arctic to study an important ecosystem downstream of drill sites in the Chukchi Sea.